Johnnie Winona Ross creates elegantly abstracted paintings that evoke both the austere landscape of Northern New Mexico's high plain and the burnished surfaces of ancient Pueblo pottery.
Beneath their satin, burnished surfaces are revealed subtle drips of colored pigment that appear in banded stripes.In a rhythmic flow that is reminiscent of falling rain, the dripping is sparse at the top and becomes more intense as it nears the bottom. These works are composed of more than one hundred layers of glazed pigments.Each of these is shaved with a straight razor until a chronology of the painting's history is revealed to the viewer. Finally, utilizing the traditional burnishing stone of native Pueblo potters, Ross buffs the surface of the painting until he achieves a soft warm gloss.
In May of 1999, after a distinguished teaching career, Johnnie Winona Ross resigned his post as chair of the art department at The Maine College of Art in Portland and moved to Taos New Mexico to devote himself fulltime to painting. He now exhibits regularly in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Dallas, and throughout Northern New Mexico. He has been the recipient of numerous awards and grants, including a Fulbright Artist in Residence and a Gottlieb Foundation Support Grant.